The tower defense genre has been a mainstay on mobile devices about as long as app stores have existed. It’s the perfect genre for smartphones and tablets alike, and unfortunately, the genre has been a bit too diluted in recent years. Every week, it seems like a dozen or more tower defense titles crop up in Google Play begging to be played, and with the majority of them playing virtually the same way, it’s becoming easier than ever to dismiss every tower defense game as a, ‘been there, done that’ experience without ever playing it in the first place.
But we shouldn’t be too quick to judge – and that lesson has never been more apparent than after playing Pirate Legends TD. A tower defense game in every sense of the word, Pirate Legends TD looks like it’s going to be just like any other game in the genre until you begin playing it. It didn’t take long to begin to appreciate the vital details that Pirate Legends TD nails to near perfect, so join me on the high seas as we take a closer look at one of the freshest tower defense games in recent memory, Pirate Legends TD!
+ What We Like
First, let’s look at the details developer Super Hippo Studios didn’t need to nail perfectly, but they did anyway. When you play a tower defense game, you don’t expect to be blown away by the overall presentation of the game. The genre focuses more on fine-tuned gameplay than presentation, and while the best tower defense games certainly have an attractive look and feel to them all their own, it isn’t mandatory. Consider the fantastic Pixeljunk Monsters for PlayStation 3, for instance: the graphics aren’t great, but they don’t need to be because the gameplay rocks that hard.
With that being said, Pirate Legends TD’s presentation rivals the best tower defense games out there. Sporting a visual style that feels like a new-age Metal Slug, the voice acting, the animations of units, and the humorous tone of the game are absolutely perfect. Pirate Legends TD knows exactly what type of tone and feel the game needs to have, and the developers at Super Hippo Studios did a nearly perfectly job in making it happen. Kudos to you guys!
The most important aspect of any tower defense game is the gameplay. Without solid gameplay, the rest of the game falls apart. Luckily, Super Hippo Studios nailed the gameplay as perfectly as they nailed the presentation!
Pirate Legends TD sports 20 unique towers (each with their own special abilities), five heroes to play with (with each one also possessing unique skills), 30+ enemy types, challenging bosses, three difficulty modes, and a host of complex challenges reserved for only the best challenges.
For a free-to-play game (more on that in a moment), Pirate Legends TD has a ton of different types of gameplay to offer, and it’s something you rarely see in tower defense games. Super Hippo Studios didn’t have to feature this much variety, but they did and as a whole, the game benefits from it.
Control your units in real-time
As opposed to other tower defense games that force you to watch your units’ demise, Pirate Legends TD gives you the opportunity to actually fire on your enemies in real-time and even change the angle of how your unit’s fire. To that end, Pirate Legends TD actually feels like a hybrid between a traditional real-time strategy and a tower defense game. I suppose it makes sense since the tower defense genre is historically a subgenre of the real-time strategy games. After you play Pirate Legends TD , you will find yourself wishing more tower defense games gave you this level of control.
In-app purchases don’t hurt the game
Pirate Legends TD may be free-to-play, but that doesn’t mean you are going to be bombarded by in-app purchases. While playing Pirate Legends TD, I never felt as if Super Hippo Studios was twisting my arm and begging me to buy their content, and because of this, I found myself wanting to throw them a few bucks their way.
The in-app content is actually pretty good too, and with new content being added all the time? You may find yourself wanting to support these guys like I did.
– What We Dislike
The file size is way too big
It’s a fun game, but it’s close to 400 megabytes! For a tower defense game, this is simply too large. Compare that to other games on Google Play that look just as good and are even more demanding, and the truth becomes clear: this game shouldn’t be remotely as large as it is. Much of the game could be stored on their servers, meaning that the installed game would be a fraction of what it is and you would only need to have a data/WiFi connection in order for the game to access the content so players could enjoy the game uninterrupted (plus, it would cut down on piracy). It’s a small gripe, but it’s going to turn off a lot of players that value their storage space.
Minus one gripe, Pirate Legends TD is nearly perfect. It’s a reminder of the potential of the tower defense genre, and it’s one of the best tower defense games to grace Google Play in recent memory. Bloated file size aside, Pirate Legends TD is one tower defense game you shouldn’t miss!